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The Glee cast and creators were in high spirits Tuesday during a panel promoting the show for Emmy consideration at the Television Academy in North Hollywood, where they dished on everything from Rachel’s botched audition to an upcoming body switch episode.
Here are eight highlights from the funny and poignant session.
1. Co-creator Ryan Murphy revealed that the remaining four episodes of the season would explore what happens next for Rachel (Lea Michele) after the glee diva choked during her NYADA audition. “The next episodes after this really deal with the implications and complications,” he told the packed house. “The great thing about that character is that she just doesn’t give up. That’s a wonderful thing to write to, Rachel’s tenacity. I think people love that about her, that she has a dream, even now. It’s inspirational to a lot of kids to see a scene like that and not get what you want in the moment but to not give up. That’s the idea of what the show is about.”
2. For her part, Michele said filming the botched audition scene was truly heartbreaking — and came from something she worried about during the Glee concert tour. “Every night on the Glee tour when I’d sing ‘Don’t Rain on My Parade,’ I used to call [exec producer] Dante Di Loreto and say, ‘I’m going to mess up one night, I know it and I’m so scared to have that happen,’ ” she said. “To have that happen to her in such an important moment was so sad, which is why that scene came so easy to me — because it was actual nerves and something that I truly felt fearful about for her and for myself as a performer.”
3. Dot Marie-Jones noted Coach Beiste’s domestic violence story line isn’t over and drew from a friend’s experience to portray the emotional scenes in which her character is beaten by her husband. “It wasn’t hard to get there,” she says, noting she cried while reading what was happening to not only her character but Rachel as well. Meanwhile, look for Jones to cover Taylor Swift‘s “Mean” in Episode 20, titled “Props.”
4. “She probably has more run-on sentences than I do,” Jane Lynch said of her on-screen nemesis, Roz Washington (Nene Leakes). Fun fact: Ian Brennan writes almost all of Sue Sylvester’s dialogue — as well as Leakes’ material. When crafting the character, Murphy revealed that he drew upon the Real Housewives star’s time on Celebrity Apprentice before he realized that he could call and offer her the part. Her first scene: a page-long monologue that was met with a round of applause from the cast and crew.
5. Looking back on the “First Time” episode, the cast praised the writers and directors for crafting a story for LGBT teens that didn’t exists for older generations and noted that the network worked with them on the intimate scenes between Rachel and Finn as well as Kurt and Blaine. Chris Colfer and Cory Monteith, meanwhile, offered different insights into filming the tender scenes. “I was really sweaty,” Monteith said, noting the couple’s close proximity to the fireplace in the scene. Added Colfer: “I was scared shitless.”
6. During the Christmas installment directed by Matthew Morrison, Kevin McHale‘s Artie found what could be his calling when he directed the episode at the center of the hour and based his performance on someone close to the show: Ryan Murphy. “I was trying to [imitate him] but Ryan was like, ‘You can’t be mean, I’m writing you much too nice.’ “
7. Amber Riley had perhaps the line of the night when asked to recall her favorite moment with on-screen love interest Chord Overstreet: “It’s always interesting when we kiss because both of our lips are so big,” she said to laughs. “We have to figure out whose lips are going to be on top!” The night’s other best zinger went to Colfer, addressing Kurt’s tight gold lamé pans from his NYADA audition: “I had two fittings and had no idea it would be a battle of the bulge.”
8. As for what’s ahead, spoilers were sparse but the cast did tease the upcoming “Props” episode in which Tina (Jenna Ushkowitz) falls into a fountain and wakes up to find everybody is someone else. Set to swap: Tina becomes Rachel, Kurt is Finn, Puck becomes Blaine and Mike becomes Joe, with Santana as Artie. “Accessories I never had before,” Shum said of sporting dreadlocks for the episode.
What are you most looking forward to seeing? Glee airs Tuesdays at 8 p.m. on Fox.
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